Page last updated at 12:16 GMT, Tuesday, 3 November 2009

Town's illuminations museum plans

Artist impression of proposed museum (Pic: 11.04 Architects)
Designers of the museum say it could attract 250,000 visitors per year

Plans to open a new museum in Blackpool in time for the 100th anniversary of the illuminations in 2012 have been proposed.

It would be situated on the promenade overlooking Central Pier and would aim to attract 250,000 visitors a year.

The project's architect said he had sent plans for the £10m complex to regeneration consultants ReBlackpool.

The museum would mainly celebrate the history of the Lancashire resort's annual illuminations' display.

London-based designer Chris Roche, from 11.04 Architects, said if the museum was given the go ahead and opened in 2012, it could capitalise on visitors to the Olympic Games in London.

I think the issue for us at the moment is that we don't know how serious the proposal is, we haven't seen a detailed business plan
Helen France
Blackpool Council

"The potential of the museum is incalculable, providing a 21st Century tourist attraction, celebrating the nostalgia of the British seaside holiday and entertaining new generations of visitors to Blackpool," he said.

ReBlackpool is the body in charge of delivering the Blackpool Masterplan to regenerate the resort. However the plans would need approval of the resort's council.

A spokeswoman for Blackpool Council said it would need to carefully consider plans for the museum and it was very early days as the council had not seen any details.

Helen France, director of tourism for the council, said: "I think the issue for us at the moment is that we don't know how serious the proposal is, we haven't seen a detailed business plan or understand what is required from the council.

"We're more than happy to have conversations with anybody over proposals for Blackpool, but at this stage we're not sure what this proposal actually means."



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